Godot Documentation: Differences between GLES2 and GLES3

in #utopian-io5 years ago




The new document outlines the differences between the GLES2 and GLES3 rendering backends. This is important so that users know what to expect when working in GLES2 (which lacks many of the advanced features of GLES3). Some of the important differences are:

  • Lack of GPU Particles in GLES2 (users have to use the slightly slower CPU Particles)
  • Lack of advanced SpatialMaterial options for GLES2
  • Lack of advanced environment (post-processing) features in GLES2
  • Lack of GIProbes in GLES2

These are some fun rendering features that help make Godot one of the most advanced open source game engines out there, so it is a shame they cannot be implemented in GLES2. But thats the price one has to pay for supporting such a wide variety of hardware. I, for one, love the GLES2 renderer. Because of the more limited feature set, it runs incredibly fast on my chromebook!


As of writing, Godot is on the tenth beta of the upcoming 3.1 release. Version 3.1 will likely be released soon, with over 4000 issues closed since the last release 3.1 is shaping up to be a great new release.

One of the most exciting new features is the GLES2 rendering backend. Since version 3.0, Godot has used OpenGL ES 3.0 as a rendering backend. But GLES3 is not supported well on older hardware (especially on mobile). The GLES2 backend will mean better, faster support on a wider range of hardware.

The issue, and the reason for this documentation, is that GLES2 supports less features. This makes sense since it is an older API built for older hardware. Because of the lack of features, it is extremely important that we have documented the differences so that users know what to avoid when writing their game. We don't want users to realize at export time that an important rendering feature is unsupported in GLES2.



GitHub Proof of Authorship


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Thank you for your review, @knowledges! Keep up the good work!

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Use GLES3. GLES2 should only be used if you are targeting old hardware, in which case there is nothing that can be done. No amount of software can improve your hardware.

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